Men’s Step 0 – Day 1

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Honesty and Humility are difficult for an addict but through them, I can find a way out of my self-obsession and into the opportunity to see my addictive behavior is driven a false sense of Pride, Hardheartedness, Unaccountability, and Dishonesty.

Their stories really impacted how I see long term recovery and endless possibilities that otherwise I would have never been able to grasp.

Honesty, Humility, Open-mindedness and most of all Willingness to admit I am powerless over this addiction and need help in recovery.

God, My Wife, and the fellowship of brothers i have at SAL meetings.

I have voluntarily put Covenant Eyes on ALL my Devices. I daily Pray the Third Step Prayers ad Serenity Prayer. I read a Chapter a Day out of the Big Book. I daily text or call my Sponsor and Sunday Night Brothers in Recovery. I will now add to this list to look at these models and ask myself where am I?

By stopping we allow God's grace to redirect our thinking our emotions and are progress away from destructive behaviors and Wait for Direction, Wisdom, and Strength in others to help us walk from Darkness into the Light of Christ.

The part that stuck out to me was the part that said we wanted others to save us, but in recovery, when we stop acting out, then the power of God begins inside us to change us.
It really shows the importance of work, bottom lines, and turning our lives over to God and trusting that He will work a mighty change in us.

Because I know I can't do it alone. Because I have tried to do it alone for forty years. I know I need others support and understanding of where I am to help me rely on God and trust in him.

Al in the program, and other friends I have made in the program.

not allowing myself to feel sorry for myself, not going into victim mode. Not staying after work alone. No going to stores looking for movies or magazines. No watching tv alone, no staying up late, no sleeping in and skipping step work, no excuses for skipping meetings, stepwork or checking in.

That we can't expect a miracle of change while still acting out. And that once we stop acting out and surrender our addiction, then God will change us and heal me and fill the need I feel in my heart.

What’s stuck out to me today with the importance of getting out of my own head?

By participating with fellowship program allows me to share my experiences and to learn from others experiences

I’m going to commit to make three phone calls this week

The only boundary I have at the moment is to not look twice

The only way I can stop lusting is turning my wheel over to God

That it is through fellowship and surrender that we can begin to heal and maintain sobriety and recovery.

It is essential because addiction is so isolating and you get lost inside yourself. In order to truly be free you need fellowship to come out of yourself and be a part of a group.

SAL group members.

No YouTube or private browsing.

We stop and then in order to keep from starting again we must surrender and as we do that is when the power of God becomes effective in us and allows us to become more than we are on our own.

Should attend meetings

Not sure I think it is essential

I am committed to reaching out to my brother

No internet without my spouse watching
No phone in the bathroom

We have to put forth effort in order to receive God’s help

The importance of attending weekly meetings and being consistent. I have done a reasonably good job thus far maintaining my sobriety and there is definitely a part of me that is telling myself that I am too busy and I don't need to go to those each week.

Being involved makes you feel like you are part of the group, that you are needed, that you belong.

Shelby, Rick, Matson

Blocker on phone, 100% honesty, weekly meetings, daily check-ins.

That I make the initial commitment to change and start acting on that commitment. As I acknowledge my shortcomings, powerlessness, need for help, that humility allows for the power of God to be effective.

Yes - I need to get out of myself

Chris R., Lincoln A., Max, Alan D., Mike N., Justin B., Jonathan L., Jacob M., Greg M., John H., Mikal, Josh D., Brady W., Ryan L., Chris S, Harvey, Irvin S., Nikita

This is something I need to explore and add to - my mind is drawing a blank

I give up the craving. I acknowledge it, don’t feed it or give into it, I surrender it. I ask God to take it from and and then I call someone to get it out of my head.

Breaking the cycle. Realizing where I am at in the addiction cycle and deciding what I’m going to do differently to change the outcome.

I think it’s important because you can talk to others who are going through the same thing. It gives you a chance to surrender anything you might need to and get advice.

I reach out to other SAL members in my meetings.

I have deleted all social media, I do not look at tempting images or videos, and I keep myself busy.

I realize where I am in my addictive cycle and then I stop and surrender what I’m thinking and try to ask God to give me something to do differently so that I do not act out, but I break the cycle.

In Dr. Bob's nightmare, he was struck by his "sponsor" being the first human that ever spoke to him from a place of having walked in his shoes.

Regarding giving back, he says that each time he does it he takes out a little more insurance for himself against ever having a slip.

the writers of the white book say "experience has shown us that we must be part of others or we cannot maintain effective surrender" and "without regular participation in fellowship there seems to be no recovery." I trust the experience of these recovered addicts with years of experience. I will follow their lead.
They also talk about how when we keep things inside our head, that's when we have always failed, but disclosing it to another program member gets it out into the light and it doesn't have as much power over us.

I will try to make a contact every day to someone from the phone list

- no devices that do not have an accountability software or some kind of safe measure
- no being the last person up at work
- no being alone and surfing the internet
- no social media
- no movies or shows with any nudity

The way to resist an urge, craving, or temptation is NOT to try fight it, as we have done before. The way to overcome is the SURRENDER to God. Just stop and surrender.

"We cannot put this strongly enough: Experience has shown us that we must be part of others or we cannot maintain effective surrender, see ourselves rightly, or work the Steps. Without regular participation in the fellowship, there seems to be no recovery."

Why? See answer below.

My therapist has told me that the opposite of addiction is connection. We must participate with others in order to build connection outside of ourselves.

I call my mom after group on Monday, my older brother after group on Wednesday, and I message at least 3 group members during the week (it's one of my weekly goals).

- No screens in the bathroom (no phone, etc)
- No social media (Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, etc) or TV/movies on my own. (All of those sites are blocked on my phone).
- No screen games on my own. (I'm not doing any right now)
- If I ever break sobriety, then I must tell my spouse, sponsor, and Bishop within 12 hours.

I'd love ideas for others, but these were the ones that used to trigger me.

Positive boundaries:
- Read scriptures and pray daily
- Go to the temple weekly (unless truly unable)
- Work on weekly recovery goals

As I stop acting out on the addiction and start sobriety, God, through his infinite grace helps provide protection and help through the act of surrender. I do all I can to exercise my agency in that direction and then surrender the rest to Him.

“We stop living inside our heads” that’s a very prevalent occurrence for me currently, where I feel like my addict self, lives and reigns and drifts to thoughts of life giving into the addiction and all the fake enjoyment that would bring

To continue to stay open, humble, and outside of myself. It’s dedicated time for me to be open with others and stay out of the dark. And gaining more contacts to be able to communicate with daily.

I will participate in online meeting before end of week and gain a contact there that I can reach out to.

Would like to chat more on this on a call

Right now, no Facebook

In that truly letting go, it’s a spiritual event and ability. Its pure humility to God, and in that true surrender, from His Power, I can feel peace, and have mental/physical triggers removed.

I have been delaying getting a sponsor because i want the "perfect sponsor for me" and so i've been choosing not to reach out. I know I need to just follow all leads that come my way and I can change later if things aren't working out as well as I hope.. I liked what it said about how we must participate in the fellowship in order to maintain effective surrender and see ourself rightly. I am so good at convincing myself that I don't want to live in recovery anymore and that I want to go back to my addiction. even though I know that is not true. in moments of weakness If I dont reach out to the fellowship or my sponsor, I will convince myself and fall.

what I said before and that It is crucial that I get outside myself. I have to get outside of living in my own head and in my own resentments

I need to choose a sponsor. I am going to reach out to Tyler from SAL
I am going to text bishop Curtis every night
I am going to text Caleb reporting about my 100 push ups.
I am going to reach out to ammon when I need to surrender lust or a desire to slip up

This is something I need to do:
1. lock up electronics at night
2. No electronics in the bathroom or bedroom
3. Wake up when my alarm goes off. no snoozing, No sleeping in.
4. Go to bed at or before 11pm (if staying up later, must be a reason and shared with sponsor or wife)
5. text Ammon when I am feeling a lust trigger
6. attend SAL meetings 3x a week while out in south Dakota Sunday, Wednesday Friday

God cant cant take away our agency so we have to be willing

How important connection is to my recovery. It's pretty easy for me to justify that I don't need the be talking with ppl when I have nothing to share, but there will always be something as I am more introspective of myself that day whether bad or good.

It helps me to take inventory of myself and listen to others successes or failures and learn from their experience

Others in group.

3 second rule is most important for me. Surrender immediately to God whatever lust I may feel. No phone in bathroom

It literally means that as I surrender my lust and other character defects, I open the door to God's power to work in my life.

Nothing yet, my partner has instituted boundaries such as we will be abstinent until marriage, which we were not before I confessed to my PA (no resentment there, I understand the reasoning and agree that it is best for our recovery. “Progressive victory over lust” was not mentioned in the reading yet unless I missed it in the audio recording.

We stop out acting out as best we can and let God do the healing when we surrender the burden of our addiction to Him.

That some people travel hundreds of miles to meet with others for an SA meeting, that is not something I think I would be willing to do.

If you are not in person, it is easier to “hide behind the screen”. Connection also seems to be a very large part of the program and meeting in person would facilitate that need.

I do not have a “sponsor” at this time and have not brought my issue up to anyone other than my partner.

first we stop, because we've gotten good at stopping, then we use god and the group to help us not get sucked back in.

we cannot be free of lust while practicing any form of lust.

accountability, connection, hope through others successes, freeing ourselves through getting our story out of our own head and into the world, letting go of it.

bishop, friends, family

filters on phone and electronics, rules of engagement (when to say no), and study guidelines for spiritual strenght.

when we show that we are willing to stop and want to stop then we can have power to feel god and his strength because we want it, through action-this is faith.

I can't do it alone. I need the fellowship. I have to stop all of the actions. not just some.

I need people to call and people to relate too and surrender to.

my wife and other members of the group.

don't scroll and waste time on facebook and instagram and youtube. I need to make a much more detailed boundaries list and have it readily available.

It means there is a power in surrender that comes from God and when we reach out, God strengthens us.

That connection is key, since starting my attendance of SAL 12 step in July of 2023, I have found that connecting with other brothers in the group has given me strength I never found anywhere else. The reason is, I never had a person or group of people I could talk with about my sexual addiction. I felt very alone and wanted to be so that I could keep acting out.

Like the White Book states on p64, it helps me to get outside of myself. I could be having a bad day, even if I am simply tired, and go to a meeting and interact with brothers and feel uplifted. It's even better when I make and take calls. God seems to be working through each of us for recovery.

I still struggle to pick up the phone and make the contacts weekly. I have a game plan to maybe schedule some regular guys weekly, so there is a set day and time that I can reach out.

I have done no real work on boundaries, mostly not even sure where to start.

Just like the material says the problem is never stopping, it's staying stopped. I promised myself and my wife over and over again that this time would be the last time and I found myself acting out again with no real understanding as to why. I never really knew that the debilitating negative emotions were the cause of all my needing to lust and then act out.

Fellowship is an important part of recovery. Requires talking with others who have been there before.

It brings out my problems and makes them smaller than they really are. It gives me perspective on what I can expect on this long road ahead.

I'm committed to connect with my sponsor, my therapist, and at least one of my accountability partners.

I am no longer locking bathroom doors
I am no longer using social media on my phone
I am no longer using Instagram and other visual social platforms on any device
I am not using any connected devices that are not monitored by Canopy when I'm alone.
I will not be in any situation where I'm alone with any female (if required travel for work, I'll make sure my wife knows)
I will not have any inappropriate conversations with any female in person / via text / etc.
I will practice the 3-second rule, rubber banding, bookending and other practical ways to combat lust
I am connecting with my Sponsor before and after any trips that I take

I stop acting out. Then I surrender future thoughts of lust and acting out to God and he takes it from there and provides His protection.

What stuck out to me today is that the only way to have true healing is to be involved? With the program and practicing the 12 steps

It took me a while to really participate in my group, but after I started, I felt the camaraderie and the friendship grow, which brought me out of my shell

Dave G of Arizona

No phones in the bathroom, no scrolling on YouTube, get out of my head, asked lots of questions

I’ve stopped acting out for over four years now. And now I’m allowing God to work in my life or before I thought I was doing it all on my own. I can’t care what other people think or how they act around me I have to widen the window of tolerance

What stuck out to me is the we stop portion. The reason it stuck out was because I've tried for almost 4 years in my recovery and didn't look at the major issues that I had developed and my white knuckle minimal support wasn't helping. I have hope with attending groups and asking for the help I may be successful.

Much like I mentioned above asking and admitting we need help is crucial. Having the support to keep going when things are hard is crucial.

My wife, my self, my mom. My Monday Wednesday Friday meeting peers, my therapist.

I have eliminated social media as much as possible (work post only), accountable software (may need new). And being honest about urges/withdrawals associated with situations that would lead to acting out.

To me it means we have faith that surrendering our addiction, our resistance to change is possible by fully trusting the process and giving up complete control of the toxic past.

"We stop feeding lust. We get rid of all the materials and other triggers under our control. We stop feeding lust through the eyes, the fantasy, and the memory... We stop living only and always inside our own heads."

I have spent so much of my life living inside of my own head. Getting out to meetings definitely helps me get out of my head and into the real world. I've gone to two meetings this week and it feels so good to connect with others, even in the structured format of a meeting.

Connection is the opposite of, and antidote to, addiction. If I can stay connected with others (and with God!), the likelihood of success in my recovery journey is markedly higher than if I were to stay holed up in my own head, in my house, and in my fantasy.

I'll reach out to Chad this week. As I get more comfortable and find a "home" meeting for myself, that I can go to regularly, I'll get numbers and make contact with those guys.

I think that the point here is that I have to put in the work upfront, as opposed to expecting something to change in me, absent any effort. I've seen this before in my life; I experienced 18 months (!) of recovery and sobriety when I put the work in. Those were by far the best 18 months of my life - my marriage was stronger than ever, my eyes were open to beauty in the world around me (as opposed to being laser focused on lust hits everywhere I turned), I was a connected and present friend and father. I want that back in my life, more than anything.

I never thought I would gain such a connection to the men in my groups. I have learned to love them and I love the connection I feel with them so much. It truly is a safe place to be vulnerable and rigorously honest with myself and others.

It means I have some skin in the game. When I moderated the group for 6 months, I got so much out of each and every meeting. I was fully invested in being there for the group and to make sure things went smoothly. I really enjoyed that time and look forward to serving in different capacities over the years.

I don’t reach out to my sponsor that often, but I do connect with other group members regularly and every Sunday, I text my accountability group (Isaac, Guy and James).

I have several bottom lines, but I have been confused at what the difference between. Bottom lines and boundaries. I need to get some more guidance about what boundaries I need to set for myself. I have been thinking about them incorrectly. I thought some of my guidelines were boundaries and some were bottom lines, but apparently, they are all bottom lines. Some of them include: no social media, no random surfing if the internet, no random YouTube videos, no using my phone in the bathroom, etc.

I can stop. I have never had a problem stoppping my acting out behavior before. It is not starting again that has been my struggle throughout my entire life. As I surrender and let God prevail in my life, through Him I can stay in healthy sobriety and love in recovery. It is only through God and my connection with Him that I can progress.

I liked the part about how it described how I wanted a third party to take away my addiction or stop for me. I have wished that many times. But I find the more that I learn about myself that I am glad I've been given the blessing of the resource of SAL to learn how to over come. I needed to learn that as I was missing that knowledge in my life. I didn't know how to overcome.

For me, I've found that connection is the opposite of addiction. I'm in addiction when I want to isolate and not talk to others. I find that I'm not in addiction when I reach out and connect with others and share my true self even when I don't want to. I find that I initially don't want to but I end up wanting to as I start reaching out. That is always the hardest part for me - starting.

I want to reach out to Tanner and be willing to return the favor of reaching out. He frequently reaches out to me and I want to show that I appreciate his trust in me and that I in turn trust him.

No using the bathroom with my phone, No social media (facebook, instagram, snapchat)

I think I have to take the first step of stopping and then I have to invite God. Both of those things make it so God can enter my life. He can't/won't enter if I'm in addict mode as I'm isolating and keeping everyone (including God) away from me.

go to meetings and get out of your head

you can't do it alone. no exceptions

Jason M

Still working on this

I have to make the first move. I have to surrender every last drop of poison. I know he has been waiting for this all my life, I have too.